Idaho’s boat inspection stations are up and running again this spring on roads and highways entering and leaving the Gem State.
Interest in them has been renewed with the discovery of zebra and quagga mussels in the region about two weeks ago.
Those tiny shellfish are considered among the most destructive of invasive species. Those particular mussels were found in pet stores, not at inspection stations, but mussels are commonly found clinging to boats that are transported around the region.
Nic Zurfluh from the Idaho Department of Agriculture told an Idaho legislative committee Tuesday that the Gem State is an integral part of an effective regional inspection system.
“The key is that we all operate them off the same set of music, so we all use the same standard protocols for inspecting watercraft. That same protocol is used throughout the West," he said.
Zurfluh says Idaho’s inspection system is part of a network of state, local and tribal governments, along with volunteer organizations. He says Idaho alone inspected 135,000 boats last year, a record number, including 35 with mussels.